The Q&A Archives: gardenias

Question: Every year I have a problem with insects on my two gardenia bushes. They appear on the underside of the leaves and eventually the leaves all turn black. These same pests then gravitate to my verbena and kill them within just a few days. The insects are small, white and elongated. I have sprayed with diazinon but the problem persists. Please help.

Answer: Sheila,

I am sorry for this delayed reply to your gardening question. The spring rush has brought a deluge of questions and we are working hard to catch up!

Your insect description sounds like whiteflies, and their larvae and pupae. There are other products to try including sprays of neem oil which must be directed upward to contact the lower leaf surfaces. Repeat every 10 days or so for several sprays. Products with imidocloprid are systemic and are another good option. Read the label carefully and follow it exactly for best results.

Thanks for the question. Best wishes for a wonderful gardening season. Please stop in again soon!

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